Hepatitis B Virus Case Study

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Hepadnaviridae is a family of DNA viruses that have an envelope of proteins. The human hepatitis B virus (HBV), both its scientific and common names, is derived from the genus orthohepadnavirus. Partially single-stranded and double-stranded, it is the only DNA virus in its family of hepatitis viruses. (Bauman, 2014). Its replication method is similar to a retrovirus, utilizing the enzyme reverse transcriptase to engineer viral DNA from a single-stranded DNA and fusing it with the host cell’s DNA. In the hepatitis family of diseases, only hepatitis B and D are blood borne. Hepatitis D increases the susceptibility for permanent effects of hepatitis B has on the liver. virus is similar to hepatitis D that are blood-borne - with hepatitis D increasing …show more content…
The virion enters via exocytosis from their nuclear capsid and lets loose of its DNA genome that is found in their viral envelope. Specific genomes have been identified: S, C, P, and X (ErtÜRk, et al., 2014). The S genome codes for the HBsAg surface protein. The C genome codes for the HBcAg antigen. The P codes for polymerase, an enzyme used for viral replication. And the X genome codes for HBxAg protein which functions for viral DNA maintenance such as DNA and protein repair. Using the enzyme reverse transcriptase, Hepatitis B is able to synthesize a negative single-stranded DNA template to form double-stranded viral DNA from its single-stranded viral DNA, using its host cell DNA replication …show more content…
There are no known methods of completely eradicating traces of the virus in the human body. Antivirals are effective against Chronic hepatitis B especially entecavir, telbivudine, and lamivudine. Interferon therapy is used as the best counter for chronic hepatitis (CDC, 2005). This type of therapy uses proteins alfa-2b and alfa-2a which regulate the human immune system by preventing the receptor binding of the virus to the host cells. Interferons decrease the amount of HBcAg antibodies to reduce spread of infection by decreasing HBV DNA to the lower replication rate of the virus and returning alanine aminotransferase counts to reduce inflammation in the liver. Some side effects of interferon therapy can induce leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, depression, fever, or myalgia (WHO, 2002). Untreated chronic hepatitis B can cause worsening liver disease, to ultimately liver failure, and occasionally kidney failure. Other preventative measures besides early vaccines in newborns, is safe handling of needles. Needles are used often in tattoo shops and healthcare facilities. Contaminated materials can be disinfected using a 10% bleach solution (Bauman, 2014). To reduce sexual transmission, abstinence or a faithful monogamous marriage is recommended

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